Part 2: Getting Started
You'll first need to choose your editing program. I use Photoshop Elements, so I can personally say that it's a great program. Don't take my word for it, though. Get online and look around, you might find something you like better! (If you already have a program that you like, please don't hesitate to leave your thoughts in our comments section, perhaps you can help to guide future digi scrappers!)
Once you have your program and have familiarized yourself with it a bit, you'll need some scrapbooking elements to go with those fabulous photos of yours. You have a lot of options here. I would suggest that you start off with one or more of the Digital Scrapbook Memories CD's that we have available in the store. These are compatible with any editing program which supports a .PNG format. They contain a large quantity of elements, such as digital stickers, brads, and alphabets that can give you a good start to your digital collection. Remember, these things can be used repeatedly, so after the initial purchase, it's not necessary to continue purchasing more elements. To augment your collection, though, there are many online stores which sell down-loadable digital pages and elements. One of our staff is a designer for just such a store! You can check out her designs and many others at Digiridoo Scraps, but this is just one example of many such online shops available to you. Many of these shops and designers do freebie samples, too, so you can snag great add-ons for your digital pages for free!
If you like playing with the photos themselves, you can also buy and download actions for your photos, which can help to make photo editing quick and easy. These actions are generally suited to a specific program, and most of what I've seen are either for Photoshop, or Photoshop Elements. Pioneer Woman has a lot of great actions, as do CoffeeShop, Totally Rad, and Eye Candy.
If you get stuck, no sweat! For technical support, check out the website for your editing program, or just type your problem into Google and you're sure to find all sorts of tutorials. As a matter of fact, most of the sites I listed above have some great tutorials as well! If your creativity has started to sputter, find inspiration in other scrappers' creations. Remember those online scrap shops? Most of them are full of example pages! You can also check my blog archives for some of my pages (look here and here), and Kelly has a digi scrapbook slide show on her blog.
If you aren't quite ready to take the leap on your own, check out one of the Digital Scrapbooking classes taught at Patch Multi-Crafts. One class is going on today (if you read this before 10am you can still bring your laptop over and jump in the class) and the next will be October 8 & 15 from 11:00 to 14:00. As always, we would love to see your digital designs!